Archives for posts with tag: Carpetbagging
Paulette Poppins Departs copy

“I shall stay until the wind changes…”

Matthew Leslie

I have too much respect for the people in this community to continue to put them through this clearly toxic campaign.” –Paulette Marshall Chaffee, oblivious to the disrespect she showed the people of the 5th District by moving there this summer to run for office in the first place.

Paulette Marshall Chaffee’s carpetbagging run for Fullerton City Council has come to an abrupt and ignominious end, announced by an email to supporters on Monday:

Paulette Suspension Letter

Mrs. Marshall Chaffee moved into a condominium on the edge of the 5th District just in time to legally qualify as a resident to run for office there in August of this year. She previously resided in the comfortable 2nd District Chaffee family home, also the residence of Mayor Doug Chaffee, who is running for Orange County Board of Supervisors. Even longtime supporters of the Chaffees were taken aback by the brazen move to a district created as a result of a lawsuit citing the lack of Latino members on Fullerton’s City Council.

Disingenuous to the end, she doesn’t even mention the obvious reason for quitting in her weepy, self-pitying announcement, instead complaining about “animosity, negativity, and corrosive discourse,” as if her own inappropriate presence in the race wasn’t a major distraction from any meaningful discourse in the first place. She also charges no one in particular for a campaign that has “devolved into a debate about race and ageism,” which she “personally finds offensive.” She still seems completely unaware of, perhaps even incapable of understanding, how grossly offensive many voters found her expedient move from an expensive neighborhood up in the hills into a heavily Latino and less affluent district expressly for the purpose of running for office there.

The opening sentence of her swan song email begins with the proclamation “When the City of Fullerton voted to have elections by districts, I saw an opportunity to make a difference in the community I grew up in, went to school in, and have worked in for many years,” echoing the rationale of many carpetbaggers who think they are somehow entitled to represent a district where they haven’t lived for decades, just because they work there or “grew up there.” Yes, she “saw an opportunity,” all right, an opportunity to completely violate the spirit of the new district based system by simply switching residences when her husband, Doug Chaffee was unsuccessful in his attempt to have the council select District 2 as one of the two districts to go up for election in 2018.*

Nowhere in her announcement does she reference the two videos that have surfaced, each of which appears to show her removing signs critical of her campaign, one from private property, and walking away with them—not exactly an honorable, or legal, way for a credible candidate to behave. Indeed, such a thin skinned reaction to legitimate criticism and cavalier disregard for the law (from a lawyer!) demonstrated a lack of either appropriate temperament or character, making her unsuitable to hold public office. It’s a good thing that the people of Fullerton will be spared her services.

Hastily bowing out on the eve of a forum traditionally well attended by City Council candidates provided a swift answer to the question of what she could possibly do to salvage her campaign in the face of such an embarrassing and unexpected revelation of her activities. Needless to say, it was the proper decision to make, ending a campaign that should never have begun in the first place. Even so, a little humility would have been in order, but is nowhere to be found in her emailed explanation for withdrawing. Now that she has, let’s see how long it takes her remove her OWN signs from the streets of Fullerton.

*A decision from which he, arguably, ought to have recused himself. It is difficult to believe that he was unaware of his wife’s plans to run for City Council.

Carpetbagging Fullerton Map

“To be, or not to be…actually living where you claim to be?”

Matthew Leslie

O.C. Supervisor Todd Spitzer, candidate for O.C. District Attorney, is promising to do something incumbent D.A. Tony Ruckaukas has failed to for years–investigate whether or not candidates are falsely claiming to live somewhere in order to qualify to run for office. Opportunistic politicians file to run for city councils and state legislative offices representing municipalities where they have not previously resided with depressing regularity. Sometimes they actually move into a new domicile in time to legally claim residence there, but often their new addresses are just fronts, pretexts for claiming to live in a new city or Assembly or Senate district when they are really still rooted in their old home outside of the new district or city’s boundaries.

Remember Linda Ackerman claiming to live in the granny flat of a prominent supporter while trying to carpetbag into Fullerton to run for State Assembly back in 2009? Former Irvine Mayor Suh Kee Kang migrating north to Fullerton to run for State Senate in 2016? Or Joe Kerr hauling himself up from Coto de Caza this year to run for 4th District O.C. Supervisor? How do we know that Paulette Marshall Chaffee is really living in her new condo in Fullerton’s 5th District instead of her longtime family home in the hills of Fullerton’s 2nd District? One thing we’ve always been able to count on is D.A. Tony Ruckaukus doing next to nothing about any of it. His challenger in November, Todd Spitzer, seems to have noticed, and is promising to take the issue seriously if he is elected to replace the complacent or complicit Ruckaukus.

This week Spitzer’s campaign sent out the following press release:

‘SPITZER ANNOUNCES PRIORITY TO ELIMINATE CAMPAIGN RESIDENCY FRAUD
With So Many Cities Heading Toward District Driven Elections, Spitzer Vows To Protect Integrity Of Elections

Orange County August 15 –Today, Orange County District Attorney candidate Todd Spitzer announced an additional policy priority to crack down on politicians who abuse the district voting laws by creating phony addresses in order to run for office.

Supervisor Spitzer stated, “Our elections must be protected. As so many cities in Orange County begin having district based voting it is critical that their candidates and representatives are in fact from the district.”

Spitzer continued, “We have seen up and down the state far too many abuses of local elected officials faking their residency in order to run for office. This is wrong and will end on my watch as DA.”

“The point of district based representation is to ensure every community is represented, equally. We must protect that system to ensure the diversity of our elected representation is protected and honors the will of the people,” said Spitzer.

“For far too long Tony Rackauckas has turned a blind eye to this growing abuse,” continued Spitzer. “With the advent of new municipal voting districts in many cities, this problem is only going to get worse, if not dealt with,” Spitzer added.”‘

Should we take him at his word? Does he have any incentive to actually do anything about candidates falsely claiming to live somewhere they don’t to get elected to office? Where’s the harm in believing him, or anyone else, at this point? Just acknowledging the problem is a solid leap over the low bar Tony Ruckaukus has set for so many years.

Paulette Poppins Flattened

It’s a jolly holiday when Paulette and her magic carpetbag move into your district to run for office!

Matthew Leslie

It’s official, Paulette Marshall Chaffee has qualified to run for Fullerton City Council in District 5, where she has deliberately moved in order to run for office. Her new residence is a relatively modest apartment condo far away from her family abode north of Brea Blvd. in District 2. I guess everyone has to get out of the house someday to make their own way in the world. Carpe Diem! If your own district isn’t up for election until 2020, move into a district with elections this year…

Fullerton now has a district-based elections system because the city was sued by two clients who alleged that Asians and Latinos were underrepresented on the City Council, resulting in the adoption of five separate (badly drawn) districts who each elect their own candidate to the City Council. Ms. Marshall Chaffee has evidently decided that a carpetbagging white lady from up in the hills is just what the city’s only Latino majority district needs to represent it, even though there are plenty of longtime residents of that district running against her.

Many die-hard Democrats–most notably Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva–are put off by this brazenly patronizing and opportunist campaign, and have withheld their support, but Paulette Marshall Chaffee’s website lists several dozen people who nonetheless have endorsed her carpetbagging run for office. There is no requirement for a candidate to have a specific ethnic background to represent a district, of course, but the district she seeks to lead is majority Mexican-American, and not a single Hispanic sounding surname appears on this list, so far (Update: I missed the name “Perez” on the list. That’s one….):

Paulette's Endorsements

Her biggest advantage in the election is having lots of her own money to spend, so much so that she is already advertising for paid precinct walkers. Will it be enough to win? Only the District 5 voters can send her packing, back up the hill in November.

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